The Legacy of a Strong Woman
Published: May 10, 2011 at 12:33 pm
Sunday was Mother's Day. I started thinking about my mother, which led to thoughts of my grandmother. Having your own children makes you appreciate the hard work raising children requires. My grandmother did not have an easy life, but she was an incredibly strong woman who successfully raised two daughters. She lived to be the age of 95, and in looking back, I realize that she was well ahead of her time in terms of decisions she made and how she chose to live her life.
My grandmother was born in New York City but when she was still a child, moved to a small town in upstate New York. There along with her 6 sisters and 1 brother, she grew up surrounded by a loving and close family. She married a man from the same small town and had 2 daughters. Her husband drank too much and often turned abusive. So in the 1930’s, when nobody left their husband, she filed for a legal separation. Of course the town talked, but she made the decision to break away. She worked in the rug mills and other factories. The hours were long and the pay was minimal. With the support of her extended family, her children excelled in school and went off to college.
My grandmother worked well into her seventies. Afterwards, she cared for her brother-in-law who had suffered two strokes. When he died, she cared for her sister who developed Alzheimer’s disease. Life was hard again, but she took on the responsibility when no one else would. Through it all, she had a kind word for everyone and welcomed anyone into her home at any time. The ages of those who enjoyed her company ranged from the very young, to the old timers she had grown up with.Continued on the next page